LAKE LOUISE, ALTA. -- Canada will not hold an alpine ski race on the World Cup circuit this season after the Lake Louise event announced Thursday it will take a season off during the COVID-19 pandemic.

FIS, the sport's governing body, says all North American events will be realigned at existing technical and speed race venues in Europe.

Men's and women's World Cup events were scheduled to be held in Lake Louise, Alta., Nov. 25 to Dec. 6.

Lake Louise organizers say they plan to run their event in 2021.

The decision also cancels events in Killington, Vt., and Vail/Beaver Creek, Colo. Val d'Isere, France and St. Moritz, Switzerland will add events this season.

The first World Cup alpine event was held at Lake Louise in 1980 and racing has taken place annually at the Alberta mountain since 1994.

The World Cup alpine circuit is following a similar move by Formula One in keeping racing based in Europe while cancelling North American events.

"Coming to the decision not to hold World Cup ski races in Lake Louise in 2020 was difficult, but we know it's the right thing to do for the benefit of everyone involved," Lake Louise race chairman Brian Lynam said in a statement. "We have worked hard to exhaust all possibilities and this decision did not come easily."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 20, 2020.